Look out for the future, because you never know what it might bring…
Question #91852 posted on 11/25/2018 5:06 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Fairytale of New York by the Pogues. Here's a good introduction to the issue.

https://www.pinknews.co.uk/2017/12/18/scumbags-and-faggots-its-time-to-talk-about-fairytale-of-new-york/

https://www.theguardian.com/music/musicblog/2007/dec/18/fairytaleofnewyorkshouldn

Thoughts? Would you listen to this song? Play it at parties?
I love this song. And I agree with the Guardian's point that the trashiness of the slur is part of the story, which is really quite nuanced. But I would hate to unknowingly ostracize any LGBTQ friends who would feel it personally to hear it or to know that I listen to it.

-NYPD Choir

A:

Dear Galway Bay,

First of all, I'd like to admit that I don't know this song very well. I, of course, did a lot of research and soul searching before writing this answer, but I don't have any sort of history with this song, as it appears you do. I can understand loving things from your childhood and then growing up and realizing that they are wrapped in a problematic history that you are completely unable to conceive of as a kid. This song is catchy, I'll give you that. I also definitely wouldn't play it at parties uncensored, and would be surprised at any public establishment that played it uncensored as well. I mean, there's a few curse words in there with the slur, and even if the establishment thinks the slur is fine (which I don't), they should still censor the swearing. 

As for the rest of this, I originally had two different warring thoughts about this whole topic. I definitely want to examine both of these thoughts here, though my final conclusion rests pretty securely on the side of the second thought. Firstly, you're allowed to like what you like. I'm really against the idea that people should be feel the need to be ashamed of the music or media that they like. There's a tendency to hide certain things away and call them "guilty pleasures" but personally I think that's a load of bunk. Like the things you like.

Now, if this whole discussion was just about a song that most people didn't like for one reason or another, then this answer would have ended there. However, since the song in question involves a slur used toward the LGBT+ community, things get a whole lot more complicated. At the very least, I think you need to acknowledge that this song uncensored could be hurtful to others. It's not cool to expose people to slurs and then act like you had no idea that they could possibly be offended. This slur is offensive, full stop. You can listen to it in your own time if you want to, but I definitely wouldn't play it in anything other than headphones. 

Additionally, Utah in general isn't the most friendly toward the LGBT+ community, and I wouldn't want to add to that in any way. Any song, even if it's catchy and fun, isn't worth alienating my friends. Whether they've come out or not, I can almost guarantee that you know people that identify as LGBT+, and this song could make them feel unsafe. You may have a friend that's in the closet who is trying to decide whether or not you're a safe person to come out to, and this song definitely doesn't scream "safe". If it were me, I don't think this song is good enough to give my friends any reason to not trust me or to not trust my love for them. 

Especially when someone made a pretty good unofficial radio edit.

 -Quixotic Kid